Rotary Building marks renovation with dedication ceremony; IU School of Medicine installs advanced MRI machine

Aug. 28, 2014

Rotary Building renovation marked with dedication ceremony

IU School of Medicine Dean Jay L. Hess, M.D., Ph.D., delivered remarks at the dedication of one of the oldest buildings on the IUSM campus Aug. 22 in the Ruth Lilly Learning Center Auditorium of the Riley Hospital Outpatient Center.

The Rotary Building, which dates to 1931 when much of the current campus did not yet exist, has been transformed and preserved with a $10 million renovation. The building served initially as a children's convalescent unit associated with Riley Hospital, which had opened in 1924.

"To me, this building is emblematic of the power of academic medicine," said Dr. Hess, who also serves as vice president for university clinical affairs at IU. "Originally built with the support of the Rotarians to provide care for convalescent children with polio, this building can now be repurposed because polio is no longer the scourge it once was. Were it not for the research conducted at great academic universities, and the translation of these discoveries into treatment, the nation would still need facilities like this, as well as countless polio wards."

The renovated Rotary Building now houses the IU-Kenya Partnership, the Division of Gastroenterology/Hepatology, the Harold Amos Medical Faculty Development Program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and offices of the Department of Surgery. The renovation, which sought to restore the building's original beauty modernizing the structure, includes 40,000 gross square feet of office and academic space.

Previously, the building served as a home of the IU School of Medicine's Department of Ophthalmology until the opening of the Eugene and Marilyn Glick Eye Institute in 2011.

Additional presenters at the dedication were IU President Michael A. McRobbie, IUPUI Chancellor Charles R. Bantz, IU Trustee Chair Randal L. Tobias and John M. Lewis V, associate vice president for capital planning and facilities at IU. Adam Cantor, a third-year medical student and alum of the IU Jacobs School of Music, performed an original work for the guitar during the ceremony.

Members of Rotary clubs across Indiana raised $276,000 to pay for the new facility. The $10 million renovation project was overseen by Schmidt Associates, working with IU architects and facility planners.

The Rotary Building is located at the north end of Ball Gardens on the IUPUI campus between Riley Hospital for Children at IU Health and the Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Hospital.

IU School of Medicine installs advanced MRI at IU Health Neuroscience Center

On Aug. 19, a highly advanced Magnetic Resonance Imaging system was installed Goodman Hall in the IU Health Neuroscience Center at West 16th Street and North Senate Avenue.

The IU School of Medicine is one of the first three institutions in the U.S. to receive one of these new MRIs, a Siemens MAGNETOM Prisma MRI Scanner. The system is a three Tesla system, where Tesla refers to magnetic field strength. Three Tesla systems are the most powerful systems approved for human scans.

Due to the sheer weight of the system -- the magnet alone is 26,000 pounds -- installation of the MRI required a multi-story crane to lower the system into the basement level of the building. Portions of the surrounding streets and sidewalks were closed as a crew installed the magnet and accompanying equipment.

The model is a significant upgrade that will provide much higher resolution imaging compared to other MRI systems currently available. The system will be used primarily for neuroscience research in studies of Alzheimer's and neurodegenerative diseases, brain tumors, concussions and other traumatic brain injuries, and more. The system may also be used for some patient care.

The cost of the new MRI is $2.5 million. It is expected to be operational Sept. 9.

Proton Therapy Center and Cyclotron facilities in Bloomington to close

IU Research and Technology Corp. and IU Health announced Aug. 22 they have accepted the recommendation of an outside review committee to close the financially struggling IU Health Proton Therapy Center once the current roster of patients has completed treatment, which is expected to occur no later than Jan. 1, 2015. As a result of the decision to close the cancer treatment facility, the IU Cyclotron also will close by the end of the year.

For more information, see IU's official statement on the news.

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